Next course starts November 2nd!

I am running my second 6 week ONLINE course starting on Monday 2nd November.

This course explores different art materials and how you can use them to create work.

I will be using observational drawing as the starting point and then exploring the subject with these materials. I will be using a range of different natural forms to work from such as shells, fruit and veg and leaves, but you can use any materials you wish.

We will be exploring: drawing, painting, printmaking (without a press) photography and mixed media and I shall be sharing artists for you to explore that work in the different materials.

You can follow along or just watch and be inspired!

I will be demonstrating and answering questions at 10am on Wednesdays (one will be a pre record)

Message mane to join the course!


This is me!

For South East Open Studios instead of cancelling it went Virtual, and we, the artists, have made videos to introduce ourselves.

Here is the link to mine – welcome to my studio!


March News Letter from The Arts School


Welcome to your March newsletter. 

I am thoroughly enjoying my weekly Life Drawing sessions as an artist at Paddock Art Studio. Having a set time that I sit down and draw, stops me procrastinating or finding other jobs to do other than prioritising drawing for myself. It is a great space, that has lots going on so please check it out! It doesn’t matter what ability you have, setting regular time aside to practice your creativity is the only way to maintain and develop your skills.

The Monthly Art Challenge for March is Darkness and Light. I will continue this year with the encouragement to visit exhibitions linked to the themes to help inspire your work. Due to family commitments I didn’t get to Hastings Contemporary in February so will try again in March.

Weekly Art Class: I will not be running a course this month at Ribs and Co. but will be running classes on Wednesday 5th and 11th March from my home in Punnetts Town, message for details. One space left this week.

Private Classes:
I offer private classes from my home on Thursdays. 
2 hour session costs £35, £5 per additional person and I can take up to 4 people. Sessions run 10.00-12.00 and 13.00-15.00. 

I look forward to seeing you soon
Sophie x

Spring is here!

January News Letter from The Arts School

Hello to 2020 – Happy New Year & welcome to your January newsletter –

I hope you had a wonderful festive break and are feeling happy, healthy and vibrant for the year ahead.

Do you make resolutions? Rather than resolutions I like to write a list of things I want to accomplish or develop in the year ahead. In 2020 I will be making more time for my own art work and joining a regular Life Drawing group at Paddock Art Studio. It doesn’t matter what ability you have, setting regular time aside to practice your creativity is the only way to maintain and develop your skills.

The Monthly Art Challenge will continue this year with the encouragement to visit exhibitions linked to the themes to help inspire your work. January is “Drawing lines”, and the exhibtion is David Nash at the Towner Gallery.

Most excitingly, classes start this month! The four-week drawing course starts on January 8th (a few places still left so please book) and you can now do the whole course (£50 for 4) or one-off sessions (£15 per session). One small change I need to make due to costs is that I will only be providing teaching materials for the class, you will need to bring your own sketchbooks and pencils.

Also – I will have my three month old baby with me and may need to feed her but hopefully she will behave and sleep through the class!

Private Classes: I offer private classes from my home on Thursdays.

A 2 hour session costs £35, £5 per additional person and I can take up to 4 people.

I hope 2020 is a wonderful year for you all and look forward to seeing you in a class.

Sophie x

P.S. CLICK HERE to read the full news letter and subscribe!

©️ Sophie Douglas and The Arts School


Drawing and Wellbeing – never to late!

This Christmas I fibbed to my mother… I told her I had a work event and needed her to babysit but in-fact I was taking her to a craft night.

She didn’t want to go, she “doesn’t do art, can’t”.

Within a few minutes of the first activity (stamping) she announced it was calming!

The second activity was met with “No. I can’t sew!” shortly followed by “It only blanket stitch!” (I had no idea what that was 🤷🏼‍♀️).

The third was wreath making, where she and I managed to create ones that were good enough to adorn the graves of our loved ones this Christmas (big deal in my family).

I am 40 and she is 75 years young.

I have done arts and crafts all my life. I have a BA, and MA in Fine Art and a PGCE to teach Art and Design plus 15 years teaching experience.

This was the first time we have ever done an artistic activity together.

We had a great night.

The point of this is to say, it’s never to late to try something creative!

To book your class or buy a gift voucher email sophiedouglasartist@gmail.com

©️Sophie Douglas

Art classes starting in September


Observational Drawing and Painting Classes at Dun Village Hall, Rushlake Green


Observational Drawing and Painting is working from real life, learning the skills of looking, drawing and exploring materials to develop your drawing and painting for pleasure, wellbeing, or professional development. Each week we will work from a different still life exploring observational drawing and painting using a range of materials. 

During your first session all Materials will be supplied – we will discuss each student’s aims for the course and what materials you will work with, the future sessions will either be supplied or you bring your own dependant on your aims. We will be working standing or sitting at an upright easel.


This class is for beginners to learn the foundations of drawing and painting, to experienced people wishing to focus on observational drawing and painting and expand their practise


Wednesdays 10:00-12:00 2 hours

Course Dates: September 15th, 22nd, 29th, October 6th, 13th and 20th 


£100 for 6 week courses

If there is space available individual sessions £20 per week

Contact me to book – Limited Spaces Available

Contact me direct to discuss and book your place


South East Open is OPEN!!

I am delighted to announce I am exhibiting my work in real life public!

Please come and visit me at:

Wimbles, Ford Lane, Vines Cross, Horam, Heathfield TN21 9HA.

I will be there Saturday 5th June 2021 10-5pm, Wednesday 9th and 16th 10-2.45 and it will be open and manned by ceramic artist Susan Ramsey-Smith 10-5pm weekends, and 2-5pm for the other week days.


June Newsletter from The Arts School


Welcome to The Arts School’s June 2021 newsletter.

I am exhibiting my artwork for South East Open Studios and hope you will be able to visit!

DATES: June 4th – 20th 2021

If you have not picked up a brochure CONTACT ME and I will get one to you or Check out the virtual catalogue

I am exhibiting with well known local ceramicist Susie Ramsey Smith the address is:
Wimbles Farm, Wimbles, Foords Lane, Vines Cross, Heathfield, East Sussex TN21 9HA
If you would like to join me for  sketching I will be there on the following days:
Saturday 5th 10-5pm
Wednesday 9th and 15th 10-2.45pm

The studio will be open 10-5pm Saturday, Sundays and Wednesday, and 2-5pm Monday, Tuesdays, Thursday and Fridays.

Please be aware that we will be following social distancing regulations,and you will need to sign in or register using the app. There is lots of lovely space to wonder outside if you need to wait to come in. Also be aware there are steps into the barn. Tea and coffee available for sale for charity, please bring cash!
If you would like tutorials via ZOOM, FaceTime or WhatsApp video call, GET IN TOUCH. £20/30 minutes, £35/1hour – you can do this individually, or join with others.

One to one art classes at my home can now take place – these sessions are tailored to you – EMAIL TO BOOK £35 per hour 

Just join in via the Facebook group or WhatsApp.

All the videos from the Facebook lives I recorded last summer are on the Facebook page and you can access them for free any time. CLICK HERE 


Pure ART360

I am delighted to be taking part in Pure ART360 Spring edition – I will be live via crowdcast, and the Pure Facebook Page and YouTube Channel

You can register to be in the LIVE Crowdcast audience HERE

Please check out the amazing interactive digital MAGAZINE HERE

The Arts School – March News Letter

Observational drawing and painting with Sophie Douglas from The Arts School


Welcome to The Arts School’s March 2021 newsletter.

February 21 day challenge was focusing on exploring materials and I really enjoyed working bigger and with new materials. For March we are going to go a step further and explore looking at the subject NOT the drawing, more details below.

I am still processing what the new rules mean, and aim to visit galleries when I can, when I have figured out what we can do when I will let you know (via another newsletter, and on social media).

In the meantime there are talks every Tuesday with the Pure Arts Group and I will be holding a virtual drawing demonstrate workshop during their Clubhouse (Zoom) on the 4th Monday of the Month (for March, April and May).

CLUBHOUSE APP – heard of it? It’s a new sociel media platform. It is different because: it’s only people talking, you have to be invited, and to gain full access you have to be genuine, follow and participate in talks, and network with people you really have connections with. I will be hosting a SUNDAY BRUNCH at 12.30 lunch each week with Lesley Samms from The Pure Arts group and Gita Joshi from The Curators Salon

If you would like tutorials via ZOOM, FaceTime or WhatsApp video call, GET IN TOUCH. £20/30 minutes, £35/1hour – you can do this individually, or join with others.

I hope you are all well and continuing to create, please let me know if I can support in any way.

Just join in via the Facebook group or WhatsApp.

All the videos from the Facebook lives I recorded last summer are on the Facebook page and you can access them for free any time. CLICK HERE


21 day Challenge MARCH 2021.
WHAT: For 21 days of 10 minutes a day

This month we are focusing on liberating yourself from the concept of the final image being perfect.  Bit “arty”? Let me explain- by not looking at the image you are drawing, but only the subject you are drawing from, you will develop your visual skills in understanding and focusing on the other subject NOT the drawn image; and you will develop your links between your eyes and hands. It will probably look like squiggles, the drawn image may not make sense but this is NOT about the image; it is about developing your observational drawing skills.



You can draw anything you want
You can use any material
There is no right or wrong!
Try to be present as you draw. By this I mean, do not judge yourself, just make marks!

Enjoy yourself!

SHARING your drawings.
Without the accountability of sharing it is much harder to stick to a daily practise, plus there is the additional support, inspiration and group learning that sharing provides.

share via:
Whatsap group
The Virtual Arts School group
Email me

On Instagram?

WHENMARCH 1st – 21st 2021

These images are by Aniko Vigh – please check out her work on INSTAGRAMArtwork by aniko vigh

Making art – reworking past

Over the past few months I have had many conversations with people, listened to talks, sat in workshops (virtually) and I keep coming back to these things:

1) You need to be honest with yourself and your work to make successful work

2) You must embraced your weaknesses, acknowledge, accept, and understand them to be able to work with them not against them

3) Things happen at the right time if you are open to them.

This paper piece “Pro Crast I nation” I did as part of my MA work over a decade ago, but it keeps popping into my head, and into conversations recently therefore I am drawn to explore it once again.

“Pro Crast I nation” screen print on newsprint paper 2009-2010

I procrastinate, it is part of me, so how can I embrace it to become a positive? I also love the process of making, so why not use my procrastination and enjoyment of process together? Instead of working on finishing paintings, I am going to embrace these two things till the end of of the month and see what I have. I am doing this by continuing to layer ans work on the paintings I have at the moment started but procrastinated to not finished.

Series of unfinished paintings

The Arts School – monthly art challenge – October

Monthly art challenge theme Light - The Arts School

Monthly Art Challenge.

Each month I set a different theme and tasks to help inspire you to draw, paint and create. If you want help just let me know.  

WHAT: October – Light

At this time of year the light changes – the sun is lower, the tress are changing colours and loosing their leaves, rain is falling creating pools and reflections.

For October we are going to consider light – how to draw and painting it, photograph it, how it moves, and how it affects us.

Task 1:
Glass – you are tasked wth spending 10 minutes drawing a glass object and exploring how to get reflection onto the surface. I do this by using a rubber to remove the marks and create the illusion of light.

Task 2:
Free write for 5 minutes on starting with the theme of light. Free writing helps you to explore an idea, to think around a theme, without editing your thoughts or ideas. If you do not know how to do this – get in touch!

Share in the group, or using the hashtag #theartsschoolmonthlyartchallenge #theartsschool

If you are doing the art challenge then please join the Facebook Group!

Next course with The Arts School – 6 week online Course -Drawing and Painting.

Abstract painting in colour by Sophie Douglas

6 week online Course -Drawing and Painting.

WHAT: 6 week online course aimed at developing your drawing and painting style, knowledge and skills.
Suitable for all levels, the course is aimed at your own development through exercises and discussion.

Week 1: Introduction – drawing and from life
Week 2: Exploring materials, techniques and processes
Week 3: Composition – choosing your subject
Week 4: own project
Week 5: own project
Week 6: own project

The course consists of:

  • Once a week email with tasks and a video tutorials.
  • Weekly making tasks take 30 minutes – hours, the more time you give the more you will get out the course!
  • Weekly zoom meetings – 30 minute optional group meetings, plus up to 30 minute one to one (this can be done on Zoom, Facetime, WhatsApp call etc).
  • Dedicated WhatsApp group for sharing, questions and answers (If you are not on WhatsApp please contact me to discuss the best way of sharing).
  • Final submission and online exhibition.

To make the most of this course you will need to give a minimum of 3 hours a week for 6 weeks = 18 hours.

Start date: Monday November 2nd 2020
End Date: December 12th 2020

The Arts School Newsletter – October

The Arts School online courses drawing and painting


Welcome to The Arts School’s October newsletter.

I hope you are all well and exploring Autumn’s glorious colours!

I hope you managed to catch some of the inspiring artists LIVE interviews with Pure 360, if you didn’t you can catch up on the website.

The first online course is up and running. The upside of online courses is you can work around your other commitments. The students are finding it very easy to follow and producing some great results. The next course starts on November 2nd 2020. Spaces are limited so book early!

I am exploring creating an online course for children, let me know if you are interested.

Thank you for your continued support and hope to see you soon.


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